Conservatives and Progressives Debate LGBTQ+ Issues in American Politics (Part 1/2)



sometimes it just gets to be too many damn letters like it just you add and let us on so like sometimes that I appreciate it in another time son likes to me damn letters so my name is Ariel my pronouns are she her hers and I am going to be moderating the panel now I just want to call something out right away which is that we tried our best to have as many people from varied backgrounds and varied identities represented here but of course it is impossible for us to represent every single facet of the LGBTQ community so we know that and we just want to call that out so the first thing I want to ask is raise your hand if you identify as a member of the LGBTQ community all right can I have everybody go around and just tell me their names and how they identify sure well my name is Donnie and I use he/him pronouns and I identify as a transgender pansexual or bisexual man my name is Blair I'm transgender and I'm a Republican okay my name is Caleb I use he/she and they pronouns and I identify as a non-binary queer I'm Raquel Willis pronouns she/her/hers identify the black queer transgender woman my name is Sarah Longwell and I identify as a lesbian my name is Jamie I used they/them pronouns identifies a queer non-binary trans femme I also identify the a spectrum of asexuality I'm Benji I'm a guy and I I'm an American my name is Paul I identify as a gay American male my name is Zachary Zane I use he/him pronouns and I identify as bisexual and queer I'm Brandon Strock and I'm a gay man David Val branch him his identify as assists same gender loving man alright my name is Luci I'm a lesbian okay so it's Pride Month who here thinks that pride is still relevant is it still relevant is it you full is it important yeah I think it's more so relevant for people in other countries in which being gay is legalized and you can face jail time or worse death or for being gay and I think here it's more of a party which is fine maaan against parties but I think it's specially important for people living in other countries Zachery your brow is very firm I yeah I don't think we should underestimate the power it has to have certain young queer people just to see other people be visible to be welcomed and part of a community maybe not necessarily as important in cities like New York where I feel very comfortable expressing my queerness but especially in other places across America where they don't have that large of a queer community where being queer isn't as visible I think it's really important to still have pride for those people and I also think it's important because in this day and age we've had what about five black transgender women be murdered in the past couple months and so we do need to actually have a visit 11 yeah so it's even more than that so it's one of those things where if we don't have these images out that we don't have these options for people to realize and understand that they're not alone then all they see are these traumatic experiences and all the discrimination and oppression that is still happening in this country not just in other countries I'm gonna just claim the mantle as the senior spokesman of the group but I went to my first gay bar in 1977 in West Hollywood there were actually bars and restaurants on Santa Monica Boulevard that had signs in front that said no allowed it was a very different place I think pride today should really embrace the changes that we've made over these decades because we've made it a more inclusive society to the point where I think we're one of the most protected groups I know from an employment standard in history so I'd like to see pride really take on a different sort of approach and celebrate what we've overcome in your opinion do you think that we're done working on equality within the LGBTQ community do it is there still a fight to fight from a small town in Texas and where I'm from people do not accept me being gay me being queer and me being gender expensive or anything and I come I was raised two hours away from where Malaysia which black transform woman and Dallas Texas was killed so I don't think that the quality that you know we we want to see the the quality that we should we should see is actually happening in America now I'm sorry could I ask a question because I think this is really important in relevant I I feel like the majority of people who feel like they're still struggling with lack of equality are people who are identifying as queer I don't identify as queer that does not define me that's not a word I want to be called as a gay man so what I'd like to know is what is the definition of queer for the people who identify as queer what does that mean discussion if we don't establish that that's that's a good that's a good conversation that's good point who here identifies as queer raise your hand okay the people who didn't raise their hands why what are your thoughts and feelings on the word queer we were talking before we said like queer we're supposed to be like a put-down or a dis you know to me I look at it myself I'm it's a regular red-blooded American gay guy I don't really see why I have to be all these other letters and all the other stuff added to it it just it I mean not no offense to anyone but it sounds a little bit nuts to me I understand why we have to be all this other stuff like why can't I just be gay and be happy with that why do I have to look that if I'm not you know queer or binary whatever then I'm like privileged in some way and it's like I'm from the hood just like anybody else with all this you know where's all this probably don't post to have coming from I don't get to keep I think that my issue is not what you identify this is when you try to tell me what I should identify as and if I say that I'm queer and I'm binary or if I say I'm a shoe that's my business I don't think I'm just responding what I'm saying is that people who say that queer is is what you said offensive my thing is like why does it matter what I identify as my ID you're claiming it's the source of your oppression what is sorry what do you mean by that Brendon I think you should expand on it well I'm just I'm noticing that the people who say that they're still victimized and oppressed here in this country are the people who are identifying as queer non-binary gender fluid all these and things what is it what does queer mean so I could excuse me I can we can defy like in order for me to support you or not support you I need to understand you have you read up on the word queer have you like googled it yeah have you yeah I mean absolutely the the definition it in the dictionary is a whole laundry list of derogatory terms which I think are apps I think it's I think it's an insult I think it's a slur I think it's low-rent I think it's embarrassing I think it's degrading I think it's something it means weird in the dictionary and if we're trying to get to a place where we normalize our community I don't think labeling us as weird as who Brendan wants to know how do you define the term queer now from what I understand different people view it the word differently but is there somebody here who would like to volunteer some kind of devotion I mean I would love to share I mean I think the term queer like you have the right to feel that it is offensive because we I mean that's the fact we know that it was used offensively as a slur for decades forever and probably and still some circumstances today but people reclaimed it as a word that was more expansive of their experiences right so for a lot of people gay doesn't fit for a lot of people lesbian doesn't fit like these terms were a little bit restrictive when it came to them talking about their identity who they were attracted to what they were into all of that and also from a gender standpoint right there are a lot of people who don't fit into what we consider a binary right that's like man woman kind of idea right so queer is an umbrella term it is expansive I still don't understand really I mean it's supposed to be this an umbrella term but then when if we becomes everything then it's kind of nothing at the same time I still don't have a clear definition it's not that you solvent defined what it is people have some thoughts on that sure so when I think of the term queer I tend to think of somebody who is either not cisgender or not heterosexual that's my impression where we're right you can be those things also but see I I difference well let me explain and I'll see what I can do for you so for my experience as previously a lesbian woman before I came out as a transient man I used the word gay I used the word lesbian I use the word woman to describe me before I realized that that wasn't actually accurate now I am a transgender man who is married to a cisgender woman so people would say I'm a straight man but I'm not straight because I lived as a lesbian for 20 years before I came out as transgender also I like people of all genders so what the heck do I have to call myself now do I call myself a former lesbian bisexual slash pansexual transgender man in order to not use the word queer absolutely not it's do you feel like when you use the word queer people know that you are all of those things that suddenly it becomes crystal clear to people what importance of people is that they know what I'm not and they know that I'm not a cisgender heterosexual I want to sort of expand this conversation a little bit more do you feel represented by the the acronym lgbtqia+ if you know raise your hand if you do if you feel represented by the acronym lgbtqia+ in some way okay right right just on the simple basic level of like there's a T in it and I match that but that's a superficial sort of thing there's much more to me and everyone here I think there's an irony because I'm hearing the people who will say who seem very more opposed to queer are also the same people were opposed to having all the additional letters in the alphabet 100 and since queer then this goes back to Donnie since queer is being more inclusive of those other letters in the alphabet I don't necessarily love all the letters in the alphabet that's why I like the word queer so I can have this one word that is more inclusive of everything so I feel like you either necessarily be remains to be defined no one can define the word I thought I did you really didn't anybody minority just a second anybody who's a minority based on their gender or sexuality right already is covered in LGBT what happens is when you add all these letters it dilutes the message of LGBT in the original fight that we're all talking about and it makes it harder for people that were actually fighting for there's some people appreciate having lgbtqia+ be a thing that exists do they feel like like it it helps them be seen or their friends be seen anybody here don't know at all it's okay sometimes it just gets to be too many damn letter it's like it just you add and let us on so like sometimes that I appreciate it and other times I'm likes to my damn letters like which is why queer is a good option if someone says I use queer cuz I don't want to use although and I don't actually fit under all those letters and to me it's a good option we're technically LGBTQ Qi aap – plus I'm saying like Oh laughter I'm so likes to say like no I'm supporting you in this and saying like yes this is this is a lot and I do understand that Benjy and I have a certain definitely don't feel represented by it because I come you know I'm Republican conservative person so all that stuff I already see is just not for me you know I'm not invited to barbecue I might invite it to the ball you know I'd rather have $25 drinks at Trump DC anyway what I'm saying is that whole thing it's I feel like when you're conservative none of that it affects me I just look at myself as an individual I mean I'm a gay man I'm open I'm probably never been you know in the closet every day of my life but I just feel like when you put all those letters and all those constraints and all these professors are telling you have to think like this and do this and be this and be that that it doesn't represent just a regular guys trying to live his life like me I don't forever is anybody rainbow flag any of it you know I feel like back in the day I did but I feel like now that everything's so politicized that there's really no room for anyone who's conservative BK like even for like pride where am I gonna go you know what I mean I don't have any plans I'm not going anywhere but where would I go without you know being you know kicked out of somewhere God did you wear one of those red hats somewhere and it's like you're a victim so I just feel like the whole spectrum just totally has nothing to do with me as an individual I think that it is clear from the people who are here that the LGBTQ community is not a voting monolith so I would love to know who here identifies as a Democrat if you could raise your hand okay to people all right who here identifies as liberal okay a couple more all right and who here identifies as Republican okay who identifies as conservative okay folks who are conservative and Republicans if you don't mind who did you vote for in the last elections for for president Trump I voted for Donald J Trump okay and I'm gonna do it again Donald J Trump and he gets my vote again all right Hillary Clinton never again 2020 okay Lucy mr. Trump I did not vote for Trump and I will not be voting for him again so I think I may be the only conservative on the panel who is not on the Trump train do you want to tell me why I don't think Trump is a conservative I don't even think he's a Republican I don't think as a person with fixed values of any kind I think he's somebody who stood on the stage with Vladimir Putin and sided with him against our own intelligence community I think he does not believe in human rights or civil rights and he and I share very few values and even though I can say do I support tax cuts or judges or some of the the policy areas where I think I would overlap with some of my other Republican friends this is a values question for me and this is not an administration that reflects my values I totally disagree but how you feel you said you still feel supported by President Trump I'm still won't vote for him again though I like what he's done and I agree with a lot of his more financial decisions when it comes to our country but I mean you're exactly right his executive orders they're not what we need I don't believe the government should be so involved in our lives and I don't think we need to be asking handouts from the government so I'm gonna be looking for someone else for the 2020 elections I actually want to ask you guys how do you feel about the Trump administration when it comes to to LGBTQ folks do you feel that his policies have either helped or harmed the LGBTQ community let you take that because I'm gonna go back to the Reagan years and there's a lot of hatred of Ronald Reagan because he never addressed AIDS that was a big crisis and it was terrible nice you know days going to funerals or memorial services today I think Donald Trump is really changing the Republican Party by working with the gay and lesbian community he wasn't a racist or homophobic tile he ran for president his best friend was Joan Rivers who was like the patron saint of gays if there was a homophobic drop of blood in him we would have heard that 20 years ago I would push back and say he was a racist one since he's been a recent report actually have here the op-ed that Trump put out about Central Park fire there's nothing here mentioned about racism of anything he's talking about having a safe city for black and brown and white people that's a narrative keeps getting pushed and pushed and pushed and we're gonna know your people are saying he did this racial thing I'm putting out the actual op-ed which is actually what we are talking about and there's nothing racial in here when a person takes out a young young boy sorry there's nothing racial there Donny do you have any thoughts on this yeah but I also don't feel like it's really my place to speak for this well I think going back to the original question which is has the Trump administration's policies helped or harmed the LGBTQ community Trump Trump does put out a lot of some sound bites I mean that's that's politics it's soundbite politics in 2019 but these sound bites actually inform policies which inform people's day-to-day perceptions and behaviors and so when the Trump administration or perhaps just Trump via Twitter puts out a statement saying that we're gonna know no more trans people are allowed in the military that's it we're cutting you off and anybody ends got to leave that affects the lives of transgender citizens of this country it makes us appear less than two other people who now can justify their bigotry and their transphobia because look at what the government does look at how the government treats transgender people or thinks of transgender people as being less than if you're so less than that you can't even serve the country that you live in and go and fight and die so that we can continue to have these rights that everybody says that we should have and we should celebrate then you know how worthy are you you're not worthy I think we need to have a more nuanced conversation in our community about military involvement because I think about the politics of the folks at Stonewall right like people still be Rivera was staunchly anti-war and I think we need to have a real conversation on how easy it is for us to jump into patriotism and jump in so feeding this American imperialist machine so that we can assimilate all right 2020 obviously President Trump is running again and there are about 50 billion Democrats running right now there is anybody exciting you worried are you excited at all about the elections and is there somebody that's standing out I know it's early but does anybody stand out right now you know I'd be happy with anyone anyone I'd be happy with anyone who isn't Trump I'm saying that is a joke let me specify me make sure that everybody knows that's a joke before I get attacked I think that it's really difficult to say this early on for me some of my frontrunner none of them are perfect of course Elizabeth Warren if I had to vote right now would have my vote Kamala Harris mayor Pete's adorable but he's not quite adorable enough you know yeah my frontrunner right now is senator Elizabeth Warren as well I appreciate her approach on student loan debt because I got it but also like her calling out the issues there by trans when transgender women are facing right now and not being afraid to say their names really meant a lot to me um so I'm watching her all right David um I think it's early someone was asking me that the other day and I was thinking to myself there's too many damn people like I just want I want it to be whittled down to like five or so and then we can going to the nuances I do think Elizabeth Warren has a lot of pluses I do here this whole undercurrent about Joe Biden is gonna be the only one who could you know beat Trump and also the stuff I think Democrats are gonna have to get over their issues and their egos and they're gonna have to work together and I think it involves having like transgenerational and different genders and having other different races other people like that in a ticket instead of everyone trying to be the head honcho like realize that probably two of y'all would be better so I could see a combination of Elizabeth Warren and someone else or Joe Biden in some way or someone just or someone just young someone just younger like it's exhausting like Barack Obama was 47 when he was voted into office like all these and this is no I'm not trying to be ageist or anything but like when all the candidates are like in their 70s I'm kind of like how long are you gonna be around what's gonna happen and and seriously like we need somebody with a little bit more youthful energy to bring in there so I think a combination ticket to me would be better but I do like Elizabeth Warren just echo what a lot of other people say I have a question that I want to ask of both Lucy and Sarah you are the two people who lean conservative who've told me that you're not going to vote for Trump this year in 2020 so what are you gonna do okay so far I'm I haven't really have had anyone out coming out it's really early to but I suppose what I would say is I wanted to fine who I would want to run is someone who's going to make sure that they're taking care of America first and trying to figure out our problems here look I'm still very hopeful that we get a third party option I think Justin Amash is is thinking about potentially getting in and there still may be another Republican primary challenger I think before the end of the summer we'll know whether or not somebody else is gonna get in I think somebody else should get in I think someone should make a pitch for a 21st century Republican Party that isn't sort of built around a cult of personality around Donald Trump there's a lot of people who could do that young Republican congressman or other folks if we don't get that and I'm forced into a binary choice between Trump and a Democrat gonna really depend on the Democrat I'm never gonna vote for Bernie Sanders there's just no no way and I would probably vote for you know my mom yeah that's right right or in but you know here's the thing look if it's if it's somebody like Joe Biden look do I agree with Joe Biden on most issues I do not but I don't think that the world is going to be plunged into a socialist health scape because of four years of Joe Biden I think you can go back and beat him later with a future leader of the Republican Party who will make a lot more sense to me than Donald Trump mayor Pete has been mentioned mayor Pete is gay he's been on the cover of magazines with his husband does this having somebody who's gay running right now does that make you want to vote for him [Applause] you

Maurice Vega

32 Responses

  1. Watch part 2 a day early: https://youtu.be/safLwed9SSo

    TIMECODES OF WHAT WAS DISCUSSED:
    00:55 – Who identifies as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community?
    1:03 – Panelist’s introductions – how do you identify yourself?
    2:12 – Is Pride still relevant / useful / important?
    4:41 – What is the definition of queer? Who identifies as queer? Is it a slur? Should the community embrace the term?
    9:38 – Do you feel represented by acronym LGBTQIA+ ? Are there too many letters?
    12:58 – Do you politically lean left or right?
    12:21 – For conservatives/Republicans, who did you vote for in the last election? Do you support Trump?
    15:02 – Have Trump’s policies helped or harmed the LGBTQIA+ community?
    15:25 – Trump and the Central Park 5
    16:59 – The military banning transgender people from serving
    18:29 – Thoughts on democratic candidates for 2020
    20:50 – For Lucy and Sara: if they don't vote for Trump, who are they going to vote for?

  2. the gay people and lesbian people seem level headed. these other people seem mentally ill. IM A jfjfhkdkdndbd and i need to be represented

  3. 17 minutes in a gay, sexual, beastiality advert showed up for a anti HIV medication.

    Sick satanic filth.

  4. Everyone always stops to listen to and look at Donny! I love how he approaches his answers with humour and calmness. It’s the only way.

  5. Just came here for Blaire, Kinda disappointed she didn't get to talk more, but the times she did were gold.

  6. I still have no idea what queer means and if claim that you can but can't explain or define it by simple terms, then you don't know either.

  7. These people are less than half a % of our population..TOTALLY unimportant and their concerns are legit, but again…. IF move to a town where church steeples grace the skyline and even during the week the radio has preachers if you are GAY or whatever letter you are… you will get your ass beat…Simple

  8. I am a "straight" man In so many ways it's stereotypical. I want to thank every member of of this group for being so candid. This was a chance for me to really get a look at where mindsets I'm usually not exposed to are coming from. You were all direct and forthcoming. I don't agree with all of you, but I am genuinely grateful to every one of you. You laid yourselves bare here. Respect.

    Thank you for sharing with me an (all too often nonexistent) adult conversation. I learned stuff.

  9. I love Blaire White and Brandon Straka… the #walkaway movement is huge!

    “I identify as”… WHO CARES? Honestly, who CARES what you personally “identify” as?? And what PRO-NOUNS you use??

    🤡🌎

  10. I look at it as this; nonbinary is more fashion and expression and so could be an adjective for that rather than equating it to a specific gender. I am someone who thinks wholeheartedly that some people out there are easily able to flow between spectrums of gender expression, to create their own unique and androgynous ways of presenting themselves to the public and in how they define themselves. But when I was growing up, it needn't be "this person is a transexual OR a crossdresser." It was fairly accepted that it was an androgynous fashion choice and that the person was an artsy type. Nonbinary covers that idea fairly well, and feel free to use nonbinary as an adjective for yourself, but to me it's a little silly when nonbinary usually simply comes down to a choice of fashion and not a debilitating mental disorder.

    I do think that there should be more consideration given to the fact that Blaire brings up –that the limitless ways to define gender EXPRESSION takes away from the original and ultimate goals of trans men and women and makes it harder to present as relatable and worthy of acceptance and help for those non-LGBT people who already aren't as empathetic, or are just an average Joe trying to understand a myriad of labels and the nebulous characteristics and definitions to each one. Sad as it is, it's easiest to gain sympathy when the concept is simple and relatable. Textbook transexual individuals can't be happy to simply change what they wear. They aren't content or phyically able to ignore their dysphoria in exchange for something nebulous and ephimeral like style choice and rebellion to societal norm.

    tl;dr Despite the potential hate for this hot take, I don't think "nonbinary" should currently be as much of a focal point as, nor equated to transexuality.

  11. The title said debate. I just wanted to point out that only one person out of the thirteen didn't raise their hand.

  12. If you’re gonna bring “receipts”, bring one that will help your argument. Not prove the other sides point.

    As far as that “receipt” goes, I’ve seen that advertisement. It’s an opinion piece by Trump from the Daily News circa 1989. He bought a full page ad the same the year the Central Park Five were arrested to explain why they should get the death penalty before a trial could even be put together. Here we are 2019 the the real rapist admitted the crime, CP5 exonerated, and Trump still won’t admit his stupidity.

    The term “queer” in its modern context means, at least to me, anything that is not heterosexual. If you’re up in arms because every else has come to terms with the word and you have not, is something you have to deal with.

  13. Im all for people living their lives, however they want. Consenting adults in America should be free to pursue happiness and many battles have been won for the LGBTQ community. I am disappointed there are so many misinformed people or they just didn't speak up .. the transgender deaths, none occurred because of discrimination or hate crime, I looked into every single one cause that bothered me… no Russian collusion, that's so done now. Trump is not a racist, the older guy in the back said we would have known if he was homophobic 20 years ago. Trump has been in the entertainment industry for years and highly accepted among liberals UNTIL he "came out" as a Republican lol… the mainstream media has pushed so many lies for so long, and it is well known, but forgotten, a lie becomes the truth if enough people believe it. I am thinking of a quote "People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. Because people are stupid, they will believe a lie because they WANT to believe it's true, or because they are AFRAID it might be true. People’s heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true. People are stupid; they can only rarely tell the difference between a lie and the truth, and yet they are confident they can, and so are all the easier to fool." Terry Goodkind, Wizard's first Rule. Some good points made. I've seen these vice panels before and I guess I want to see people to gain more perspective and maybe some happens but the formathow they position the people out to talk to each other discourages that. another swing and a miss by Vice.

  14. "Queer" would be used as a blanket term. Like saying "I'm white" instead of "I'm anglo-european on my mom's side, German and polish on my Dad's, there's about thirteen other things really far down the line. Blahblahblah." Basically I agree with Donny. It's just a quick and easy way to say something generally understood rather than bore people to death with over-labeling. Regardless of negative connotation.

  15. Benji's introduction was one of the most endearing things I've seen in a while. And the receipts!

    I would love if Blaire could collaborate with some of the people here.

  16. Ridiculous… Whether its racism or not if they perceive it as racism then their perception is its racism… Saying junk like this shows how distorted these peoples views are… Especially from people who feel misrepresented!

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